Tag Archives: entrepreneur

NSW Sponsorship – Venture Capital Entrepreneur Visa – Subclass 132B

In our earlier post we discussed the Department of Immigration’s requirements for the granting of a permanent residency visa under subclass 132B.

To recap, this is a visa pathway for those who have obtained at least A$1 million in funding from an AVCAL approved Australian Venture Capital firm.

Sponsorship (also known as a nomination) is required by a State Government to obtain a visa under this subclass.

If the applicant intends to establish a business in NSW an application for sponsorship is made to the NSW Government.

In addition to the Department of Immigration requirements, the NSW Government requires that applicants have a business plan for a complying entrepreneur activity that demonstrates that the activity that is to be undertaken in NSW:

  • Proves a commitment to maintaining an ongoing relationship with NSW, and
  • Is proposed to lead to the development of an enterprise or business in NSW, or the commercialisation of a product or service in NSW.

The NSW Government advises a priority processing time of five (5) business days for Business Talent visa nomination applications, so long as the application documentation is complete.

Visa subclass 132B – Australia’s Venture Capital Entrepreneur stream

The Venture Capital entrepreneur stream (subclass 132B) of the Business Talent visa provides direct permanent entry to Australia for migrant entrepreneurs who have successfully sourced venture capital funding through a Venture Capital member of the Australian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association Limited (AVCAL).

This is a permanent residency visa, allowing the main visa applicant together with a spouse or partner and children to live and work or study in Australia.

Visa holders can enrol in Medicare, and are able to buy property in Australia without the need for approval from the Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB).

Applicants do not have to be aged under 55 years, and there is no English language requirement to  be satisfied to be granted this visa.

There is no requirement to live in Australia before this visa is granted.

To be eligible for this visa:

  • Applicants must have received at least AUD1 million in funding from an Australian venture capital firm.
  • The funding must be for the start-up, product commercialisation or business development of a promising high-value business idea.
  • The venture capital firm must be a member of AVCAL.
  • The visa applicant must have entered into a formal agreement with the venture capital firm for the funding.

Importantly, this is a permanent residency visa.

This means that the holder of such a visa is able to remain in Australia indefinitely, and to travel to and from Australia for 5 years following the granting of the visa.

After those 5 years a subclass 132B visa holder will apply for a Resident Return visa if s/he wants to have a facility to travel to Australia from overseas.

Visa applicants must have entered into a legally enforceable agreement with an Australian company to receive venture capital funding of at least AUD1 million for one of the following purposes:

  • Early phase start up of a business
  • Commercialisation of a product
  • The development of a business
  • The expansion of a business

Ideally, visa applicants should have appropriate background in the area in which VC funding is sought – this can be evidenced through tertiary qualifications, business ownership, and/or patents for an invention held in other countries.

Visa applicants must also satisfy the Department of Immigration that they genuinely have a realistic commitment to either:

  • Establish an eligible business in Australia or
  • Participate in an existing eligible business in Australia


  • Maintain a substantial ownership interest in that eligible business, and
  • Maintain direct and continuous involvement in that business.

Importantly from a visa risk management perspective, Venture Capital Entrepreneur visa holders are not subject to Business Skills post-arrival monitoring.

Sponsorship from a State Government is required when applying for this visa.

In other words the process when applying for a subclass 132B visa is:

  • Enter into an agreement with a Venture Capital firm for funding of at least AUD1 million.
  • Submit an Expression of Interest for a subclass 132 visa with the Department of Immigration.
  • Obtain sponsorship from a State Government in Australia.
  • Accept the resulting invitation issued by the Department of Immigration.
  • Submit the required documentation to the Department of Immigration.
  • Visa granted.

Go Matilda Business Visas is working with approved Venture Capital firms in Australia that can provide funding, and the required Agreement for the purpose of the visa application.

We can also assist with all other stages in the visa application process discussed above.

Please complete the enquiry form on this web page or telephone us if you would like to discuss your situation and require further information.

New Australian Business Visa for Entrepreneurs

The Australian Government has announced a new pathway to permanent residency in Australia for entrepreneurs.

The new pathway is the Entrepreneur stream of visa subclass 188, and is available for entrepreneurs who want to develop or commercialise their innovative ideas in Australia, and who have A$200,000 in funding from a specified third party.

Applications must be nominated by a State or Territory Government in Australia.

More specifically, applicants must:

  • Be under 55 years of age, although a State or Territory Government can waive this requirement if the proposed “Complying Entrepreneur Activity” will be of exceptional economic benefit to the nominating State or Territory
  • Have competent English, and be able to provide evidence of this at the time the visa invitation is issued
  • Be undertaking – or proposing to undertake – a “Complying Entrepreneur Activity” in Australia, and have a genuine intention to continue this activity

A Complying Entrepreneur Activity is an activity that relates to an innovative idea that will lead to the commercialisation of a product or service in Australia, or the development of an enterprise or business in Australia.

This activity must not relate to any of the following excluded categories:

  • Residential real estate
  • Labour hire
  • Purchase of an existing enterprise or a franchise in Australia

An activity is a Complying Entrepreneur Activity if all of the following requirements are met:

  • The applicant has one or more legally enforceable agreements to receive funding with a total of at least A$200,000 from one of the following entities:
    1. A Commonwealth Government agency
    2. A State or Territory Government
    3. A Publicly Funded Research Organisation
    4. An investor registered as an Australian Venture Capital Limited Partnership, or an Early State Venture Capital Limited Partnership
    5. A Specified Higher Education Provider
  • Under the agreement at least 10 per cent of the funding must be payable to the entrepreneurial entity within 12 months of the day the activity starts to be undertaken in Australia
  • The applicant held at least a 30 per cent interest in the entrepreneurial entity when entering into the agreement
  • The applicant has a business plan for the entrepreneurial entity noting how the innovative idea will lead to the commercialisation of a product or service in Australia, or the development of an enterprise or business in Australia.

The outcome of a successful application will be a provisional visa under subclass 188, permitting a stay in Australia of 4 years and 3 months.

In common with visas granted under the other streams of subclass 188, permanent residency for most will be secured through a subclass 888 visa.

Key requirements for the granting of a permanent residency visa under the Entrepreneur stream of subclass 888 include demonstrating a successful record of entrepreneurial activities in Australia.

A successful record of entrepreneurial activity will be measured by a combination of “key success factors” and “supporting success factors.”

Applicants for the subclass 888 visa will need to demonstrate the completion of at least two key success factors, or a combination of one key success factor and three supporting success factors.

Key success factors include:

  • Employing two or more Australians, permanent residents or other eligible persons
  • Generating an annual turnover of at least A$300,000
  • Filing a provisional patent or acquiring a standard or innovation patent
  • Receiving ongoing funding or investment in the entrepreneur activity
  • Entering into a partnership with a University
  • Selling an entrepreneurial venture for A$2,000,000

Supporting success factors include:

  • Diversifying entrepreneurial activities into other business areas
  • Receiving a statement of success from a State or Territory Government nominator
  • Receiving sponsorship from the corporate sector
  • Starting at least one other business or contributing to at least two other businesses
  • Receiving formal awards or recognition
  • Raising or contributing to social capital

As with the subclass 188 visa, for a successful subclass 888 visa application the activity undertaken must not relate to any of the excluded categories:

  • Residential real estate
  • Labour hire
  • Purchase of an existing enterprise or a franchise in Australia

We take this opportunity to remind intending applicants for a subclass 188 stream (whether under the Entrepreneur stream, or any of the other streams under subclass 188) that the 188 visa is technically a temporary residency visa, so there are also tax planning advantages available, particularly in respect of income and capital gains arising outside Australia.

Tax planning and business structuring advice is available through our partner business, GM Tax.

If you are interested in discussing your visa strategy, and/or making an application for an Australian Entrepreneur visa we will be delighted to hear from you. A free initial discussion is available.